Isle of Man Electric Motorcycle Race News Updates
Isle of Man: Victory Racing has charged forward in its second practice with Guy Martin replacing injured William Dunlop to ride his first ever lap of the TT course on an electric motorcycle.
William fell from his Tyco BMW S1000RR at Laurel Bank in the morning’s Superstock practice lap and was taken to Nobles hospital. He had a broken rib and bruising, ruling him out of any more racing this week. After consultations with both teams and both riders, William’s Tyco BMW teammate will ride the electric motorcycle inWednesday’s TT Zero race.
For his first ever ride on the electric bike, Guy Martin rode an incredible 104.56mph lap and hit 147.8mph through the Sulby speed trap. Guy is known for his love of engineering, but even he was almost left speechless at the end of his lap. “I couldn’t be more impressed,” he said. “It was mega. So quiet and really fast. A mega experience.”
While Guy took much of the spotlight during today’s practice, Lee ‘General Lee’ Johnston rode a 103.94mph lap and screamed through Sulby 15mph faster than his previous practice lap, hitting 157.9mph. Riding over the 150mph mark will be come as some solace for William Dunlop as he had told the team in their morning briefing that he was eyeing up 150mph at Sulby today. Little did he know at the time how his day would pan out.
With Guy stepping in last minute, the team was able to run two bikes and now has two sets of battery data that it will study to make decisions about the setup for the SES TT Zero race on Wednesday.
Knowing exactly what battery power settings to choose is proving crucial to success, as both Lee and Guy slowed as they rode over the finish line, with Lee running out of battery power as he brought the bike back up pit lane after his lap.
As he walked up pit lane, Lee said he knew he’d ridden fast early on: “I caught up with Guy at Sulby and got a good slipstream then passed him,” he said. “I was starting to slow coming down from the Creg, then Guy came past.”
Team Manager, Brian Wismann, said: “The team were gutted to hear of William’s crash during practice this morning, but are relieved to learn that he’s OK and will make a full recovery.
“We had a talk with William and he pegged Guy as the best rider to fill in for him on the Victory Racing electric prototype, so we moved quickly to get Guy confirmed for the bike.
“We sent Lee and Guy out for today’s session with the power turned up a bit from the first session, and the riders made good use of it! Unfortunately, we overshot our mark a bit and both riders slowed in the final mile to cross the line.
“Luckily, we’ve been given another qualifying session tomorrow so we can take another shot at getting the perfect balance between power and energy consumption.”
The practice highlights how performance in the Zero TT is down to the amount of electrical energy that can be stored onboard. Parker’sUS-based strategic account manager, Kevin Holloway, sums it up succinctly: “Energy storage is the Holy Grail for electric vehicles.”
After Lee achieved 157.9mph today on the bike, Victory Racing and Parker Racing have more details about the design of the electric motor that propelled him to that speed.
The motor is made by Parker and called the Parker GVM. It’s cylindrical and sits behind the swingarm’s pivot point. The Parker GVM is just eight inches (0.2m) in diameter and five inches (0.13m) long, but generates 175hp giving around 165hp at the rear wheel.
It is 97 per cent efficient; nearly all of the electrical energy drawn from the Brammo batteries is converted in to kinetic energy to drive the chain and sprocket on the rear wheel.
Parker has designed an internal water-cooling system for the GVM motor. It resides within the motor, rather than creating a jacket around it; this way the smaller volume achieved means that the motor has a much higher power density.